Written answers

Thursday, 20 December 2012

Department of Public Expenditure and Reform

Public Sector Allowances

Photo of Éamon Ó CuívÉamon Ó Cuív (Galway West, Fianna Fail)
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To ask the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform if he will provide details of all allowances to public and civil servants that were abolished this year including details of the estimated savings in 2013 of the elimination of such allowances in each case; whether they apply to existing staff or to new employees only; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [57727/12]

Photo of Brendan HowlinBrendan Howlin (Wexford, Labour)
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Departments were notified by my Department on 28th September 2012 of details of the Government decision in relation to the outcome of the Review of Public Sector Allowances and Premium Pay. Copies of these letters, detailing allowances to be abolished for new beneficiaries and allowances to be approved for new beneficiaries but subject to review and/or modification are publicly available on my Departments website at www.per.gov.ie . Extensive material relating to the review, including a spreadsheet summarising statistics and the outcome of each allowance reviewed are also published on the website.

Approval for payment of an allowance to a new beneficiary pending the outcome of the review was withdrawn from 31st January 2012 and was not restored in the case where the review found that there is no business case for its payment to new beneficiaries. Because of the moratorium and limited recruitment across the public sector, the immediate value of these decisions is estimated at €3.5 million in 2012 rising to €16 million in 2016, arising mainly in the Education sector where there is some recruitment. Additional savings will be achieved as further allowances are abolished or modified.

As part of the next steps of the Allowances Review process, my Department has written to sectoral management instructing them to engage immediately with staff interests with a view to securing their early agreement to the elimination of those Departmental allowances payable to current beneficiaries, where no business case exists to pay those allowances to new beneficiaries, with a list identified for consideration among the allowances they should prioritise for early elimination. In addition, Departments have been asked to identify other allowances, including legacy allowances, for elimination from current beneficiaries. Departments have responded to my Department on the request for prioritisation and are engaging with staff representatives on the issues.

Given the process currently underway, it is not appropriate to identify a specific target for savings in 2013.


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